There’s a sting in this tale

By Brian Rogers

It is pest time of the year, when we are bombarded with all kinds of annoying, stinging, blood-sucking, tax-grabbing critters.

If you have survived the jellyfish, stingrays, great whites, Taxcinda and mosquitoes, that only leaves the wasps.

Here at RR headquarters, we have had more than our share of wasps to deal with.

There?s a two stage answer to this problem. 1) Alcohol. 2) Petrol. 3) A  lighted match.

Alert readers will have noticed that there are actually three stages to the solution; stage one is the reason for this discrepancy. It?s important not to mix the stages while completing each one. Confused already? Us too.

The first step in dealing with wasps is to get to know the enemy. Try to engage with each of them, learn their names, understand their viewpoint of the world, then waste the mothertruckers with any chemicals you can throw their way.

It?s important to decide which politically correct method you are going to use in dealing with wasps.

The Green method

Put a sign outside the wasp nest, urging them to go away. Maybe organise a hikoi around the wasp nest, with a gender neutral approach, and sing kumbaya while sucking on a Turkish peace pipe.  

Tell the wasps they are welcome to stay as long as they wish and apologise for the naughty humans interfering with their traditional lifestyle. Ban something that might be unwaspish.

The Labour approach

Tax the wasps on arrival at the nest, leaving the nest and while flying: Air Tax. Tax them per sting they inflict on any other species, and double it for any human who is working at the time. Tax any insect wearing yellow and black.

The NZ First theory

Mock their accents, even though they are normal wasp accents, spend $3 billion finding them other work, claiming that 550 have found other work, despite the fact that only 55 have found other work.

The National system

Send in Judith Collins. The wasps die. Cold, alone and sorry.

What we actually did may sound familiar. This method is based on an ancient recipe for making Christmas cake, but the principles are the same: Gather rum, petrol, anti-freeze, sunhats, Lynx Africa deodorant, drain pipe, Coldplay CD, ladder, towels, gloves, ice, mother?s favourite floor rug.


Take a sip of rum to check for nose, consistency and flavour.

Put on a sunhat to prevent melanoma  and sunstroke.

Brief the crew. Identify hazards, opportunities, escape routes, easily impressed bystanders, discuss the cricket, joke about the hazards, sniff the petrol to make sure it?s still petrol.

Check the rum again for consistency.

Ready the petrol can.

Read the label of the rum to check country of origin and residual sugar level. Remember a reggae tune that goes well with rum.

Reposition the sunhat.

Sniff the rum and sip the petrol. No, that can?t be right.

Google ?wasps?, but get distracted by Jennifer Aniston fan page posts.

Position the ladder on tree up to the  wasp nest.

Discuss the rate of ice melt in the rum glass, and wonder if it?s related to the homeless polar bears in the Arctic.

Climb the ladder with the petrol can and the drain pipe.

Admire the view from the top of the ladder.

Drop the drain pipe.

Back down the ladder.

Take a sip of rum while you?re on the ground, discuss the Jennifer Aniston situation and agree more research  is required.

Remind each other that we?re here to deal with the wasps.

Sniff the rum and the petrol, close one eye and look down the drain pipe to see if there?s anything inside it. Check with the other eye.

Discuss the point of having Coldplay CDs and decide there?s nowhere else for them.

Climb the ladder again with the petrol and the drain pipe.

Position the end of the drain pipe above the wasp nest. Get your mate to pass up the petrol can. Start pouring petrol down the pipe, making sure most of it falls over your mate, two rungs down.

Get stung on every part of your body except the underarms, because even wasps have standards and won?t go near  Lynx Africa.

Back down the ladder, kicking over the rum on the way down.

Sniff the petrol to see if there?s any left. Look down the pipe to see if there?s any in there. Check with the other eye.

Pour copious amounts of petrol down the hole, until the ratio of litres per insect is about 1:1.

Play the Coldplay CD and throw the old rug over the infestation. Any wasps that survive the fumes will hear the CD and die of exasperation.

Go home and try to remember why you needed antifreeze, explain to your wife about the rug and tell her she?s more lovely than Jennifer and much more understanding.

Follow up: Three months later, wonder what happened to the ladder?